RBS announced as main sponsor of Greyfriars Tartan Fashion Show

Royal Bank of Scotland, Scottish fashion experts and Edinburgh businesses have rallied round to support the Greyfriars Tartan Fashion Show being held at Grassmarket Community Project next week.

Cutting-edge tartan designs from around the world, submitted for the Greyfriars Tartan Design Competition earlier this year, will be showcased at the event on Thursday 12 March (6pm-9pm). RBS has been confirmed as the main sponsor, with Anderson Strathan, individual sponsor David McLellan, Johnsons Stalbridge and UK Safety Mats all making donations to help make the event a success.

The three judges have been confirmed as Natalie Kerr, RBS Head of Business Banking Marketing, Scottish fashion blogger and marketing expert Colin Gilchrist, and Mal Burkinshaw, Fashion Programme Director at Edinburgh University’s School of Design.

The competition and fashion show have been made possible thanks to funding from the Scottish Government’s Enterprise Ready Fund, which aims to launch the Scottish manufacturing industry and social enterprise products onto an international sales platform.

Katerina Faulds, Greyfriars Tartan Sales Manager at Grassmarket Community Project, said: “We are incredibly grateful to RBS, the judges, local businesses and everyone else who has helped us make it this far. This fashion show is our first major step towards working with fashion designers from all over the world, allowing us to expand Scottish social enterprise into global export markets. We’re so excited to see the competition results on the night.”

The unique Greyfriars Tartan was designed by a member of Grassmarket Community Project, a social enterprise based in Edinburgh’s Grassmarket where vulnerable local people can be part of a community, develop new skills and self-confidence, and become more employable. The tartan is officially registered and used to teach members textiles skills which they then use to create a range of beautiful handmade products.

Natalie Kerr, Head of Business Banking Marketing for RBS, says: “I am a big supporter of locally-based community projects, like Grassmarket Community Project and its Greyfriars Tartan enterprise, which help foster and encourage new skills and confidence. I firmly believe that ventures that come from grass roots levels like this have the opportunity to make the biggest difference to the areas we live and grow up in. It can be contagious, and inspire future entrepreneurs and ideas for generations to come.”

The idea behind the tartan design competition was to encourage designers from all over the world to re-discover, re-imagine and re-connect with tartan, and it has seen designs submitted from Indonesia (Jakarta) and India as well as England, Wales and Scotland.*

Nina Falk, Greyfriars Tartan Textiles Specialist at Grassmarket Community Project, says: “It has been fascinating to see designers with different influences and backgrounds all work with our tartan fabric and we can’t wait to see their creative designs on the catwalk.”

Local businesses which have donated raffle prizes are: Out of Hand, Helios Fountain, Mr Wood’s Fossils, Mamma’s, The Beehive Inn, Hawico, Graze, Purple Glamour, Fabhatrix, Scotch Whisky Experience, MYAdventure and Apex Hotels. Barr and Tunnocks provided refreshments.

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For further information and high resolution images please contact Fiona Vernon or Samantha Mckay-Challen at Niche Works on 0131 669 0333 or This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. / This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

Notes to editors:

High resolution images of Greyfriars Tartan products are available on request.

For further information on Greyfriars Tartan visit: www.grassmarkettartans.co.uk. 

*Design entries were received from the following designers:

  1. Jessica-Jane Wearing, Scotland
  2. Kimberly Irvine, Scotland
  3. Fiona Muirhead-Kerr, Scotland
  4. Name: Siobhan Mackenzie, Scotland
  5. Lorraine Tranter, England
  6. Zoe MacQueen, Scotland 
  7. Hanin Nabilla Nurrahmani, Indonesia
  8. Senial Jaishani, England
  9. Kerri Plumtree, England
  10. Emiah Elliott, Wales
  11. Lauren Wakelam, England
  12. Diana Conac, Romania
  13. Shruti Grover, India

Grassmarket Community Project

Grassmarket Community project was born out of a century-old partnership between Greyfriars Kirk and the Grassmarket Mission in Edinburgh, transforming from a humble soup kitchen into the vibrant and inclusive community hub it is today.

Contact details

Greyfriars Tartan, Grassmarket Community Project, 86 Candlemaker Row, Edinburgh, EH1 2QA. Tel: +44 (0) 131 225 3626/website: www.grassmarket.org.

Social media

Facebook: Grassmarket Community Project

Twitter: @GCP_Edinburgh

Edinburgh Fashion Week

The Greyfriars Tartan Fashion Show is one of the many events taking place during Edinburgh Fashion Week (7-15 February). Kicking off with a packed weekend of fashion shows, workshops and tutorials inside Edinburgh Fashion Week’s hub on The Mound, the city’s leading retailers and independent stores will be accompanied by special pop-up shops, exciting food and drink and DJ sets. Watch out for special offers and events across the city throughout the week.